The 2021 engagement and bridal season hold solid promise.

Wishful thinking?

Maybe. . . but even with the uncertainties of short-term preventative measures,
the slow rollout of a vaccine, and the drop in retail sales, I am encouraged by early
consumer behavior reports predicting near-normal engagement numbers by year end.

Traditionally, approximately 25% of engagements occur in the months of December and January, translating to approxi- mately 600,000 engagements. All indicators point to similar (if not greater) numbers for December 2020 through January 2021.

Yes. . . COVID continues to terribly disrupt businesses, fami- lies and relationships, causing an increase in divorces and breakups of unmarried couples, according to anecdotal reports.

Yet it has also had the opposite effect, and in similar if not greater numbers: relationships have strengthened among unmarried couples with renewed desires to formalize their commitments.

Hence my cautious optimism.

However, I’m not suggesting that near-normal engagement numbers indicate a return to pre-COVID bridal “normality”. . . there are still plenty of factors to impact brides’ behaviors, including:

  • –  business restrictions;

  • –  newly engaged brides-to-be who may delay their gown

    shopping waiting for more widespread vaccine distribution;

  • –  brides that opt for an informal white dress for streamlined

    wedding ceremonies and receptions;

  • –  a willingness to shop online for bridal attire;

  • –  the possibility of shorter engagement periods.

    However, the steps you have taken to minimize the potential negative impact of those listed above, including:

  • –  you’ve improved your social media;

  • –  you’ve concentrated on updating store and presentation;

  • –  you’ve updated sales training;

  • –  you’ve adapted with a start-to-finish review of her journey

    through your store;

  • –  you’ve evaluated expense and product performance.

    And a critical step that continues to serve you well. . . your attitude and resilience.

    A favorite quote from Marcus Aurelius, Meditations Book IV:

    “The Universe is change, life is opinion.”

    Wishing you the best “opinion” for this holiday and coming bridal season.